Greens issue call to 'take environment seriously' as Harrogate Spring Water prepares new version of expansion plans
Harrogate Green Party has called on Harrogate Spring Water to take community and environmental interests into full consideration when it submits its next planning application for expansion.
The comments follow the announcement by the leading bottled spa water company that it would now accept the rejection of its most recent version of its plans by councillors on Harrogate Borough Council's planning committee.
A spokesperson for Harrogate & District Green Party said: "We hope that Harrogate Spring Water will take local community members and groups concerns seriously and reconsider innovative ways to use the existing site.
"Failing that, they will need to ensure complete and valuable compensation for both nature and public access for any loss of Rotary Wood.
Harrogate Spring Water's intention now is to to submit a new planning application in the coming weeks with, it says, details shared widely with the community as it seeks more space to maintain its position as the 'Number One British Premium Bottled Water.
It says it has listened to the feedback on it original expansion plans and has issued a pledge to "engage with the community."
But local green campaigners, who have raised concerns over the loss of trees and the planned expansion's ecological and environmental impact ever since the company was granted outline planning permission to expand onto Rotary Wood in 2017, say they want to see real movement on issues affecting the Pinewoods area of Harrogate.
A spokesperson for Harrogate & District Green Party said: "The past suggestions included a substantial wildlife corridor from the site to Birk Crags across the agricultural fields, requiring heavy investment.
"If Harrogate Spring Water is serious about local wildlife and community access, they could look at ways to achieve this."
Rotary Wood was planted 16 years ago by local school children as part of the Rotary Club of Harrogate's celebrations to mark the 100th anniversary of the very first rotary club.